On January 2015

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January, named after Janus, the God of beginnings and transitions

January wasn’t always the first month because March was in the old Roman calendar

January Symbols

  • Flowers: Carnation, Snowdrop
  • Birthstone: Garnet
  • Zodiac: Capricorn (Dec. 22 – Jan. 19) and Aquarius (January 20th into February)

January has also been referred to as Ianuarius (Romans), Wulf-monath (Saxons wolf month), Wintarmanoth (Charlemagne’s winter/cold month), Tammikuu (Finnish, month of the oak moon), Leden (Czech ice month), Prosinec (Slovene)

The names for January’s moon are Old Moon, Moon after Yule, and Storm Moon

Depending on your location, the moon will be full on January 4th/5th, and the new moon will be January 20th

January starts on the same day of the week as October in common years, and starts on the same day of the week as April and July in leap years

January ends on the same day of the week as February and October in a common year, and ends on the same day of the week as July in a leap year

On average, January is the coldest month of the year for most of the Northern Hemisphere, but the warmest month of the year for most of the Southern Hemisphere … thus January and July are seasonal equivalents

Movie titles include movies Captain January (1936), The January Man (1989), and The Two Faces of January (2014)

January promotes teen driving awareness, unchaining a dog, bath safety, books, getting organized, wealth mentality, hobbies, learning to ski & snowboard, mail order gardening, letter writing, thank you, radon action, mentoring, slavery & human trafficking prevention, fat-free living, staying healthy, slow cooking, and getting over it

January celebrates walking a dog, worldwide rising star, creativity, quality of life, polka music, self-love, OK to be different, blended families, printing, high-tech, stamp collectors, crime stoppers, and yours mine & ours

January is the month to enjoy oatmeal, prunes, candy, gourmet coffee, hot tea, soup, wheat bread, swapping soup, bread machine making, brain teasers, and making bread in a bread machine

January is the time to embrace training your dog, adopting a rescued bird, celebrating life, dried prune digestion, balancing life, changing your stars, skating, being on purpose, finding your way, shaping up, reaching your potential, voluntarily donating blood, and watching bald eagles

January is the month to increase awareness about stalking, the thyroid gland, personal trainers, birth defects, cervical health, financial wellness, Braille literacy, child-centered divorce, glaucoma, birth defect prevention, poverty, eye health, clinical trials, autism, and self-help groups

Have a great January. Which songs did you enjoy?

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 7

On Life
I very much enjoy Jeanne Moos’ segments on CNN. Her quirky, yet personal approach to issues and stories bring many smiles. A humorous look at events is helpful in life. I recently saw this timely quote that supports her work.

Think of what would happen to us in America if there were no humorists; life would be one long Congressional Record (Thomas Masson)

The world would be a better place if people adopted the closing to Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac as a personal mantra. I’ve mentioned this quote before, but it keeps coming up in my mind: “Be well, do good works, and keep in touch.”

For the stimulating thinking through pictures, I added the Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind to my personal favorites.

Much of the country is receiving a cold blast of winter. And to think I attended (in its entirety) the coldest NFL game on record to date.

Speaking of the cold, people citing this cold snap and other recent short-term weather events to go against global warming are just as pathetic as those using short-term weather events of summer to promote the issue. Sorry, let’s make that pathetic and ignorant.

Looking for a good soup this weekend? Ribollita (Tuscan Bread Soup) is our favorite. Hearty and yummy!

Between the winter blast, my one trip to New Orleans, and the devastation from Katina, the images in this poem touched me this week.

On Politics & Government
An open message to our national Senate and House of Representatives elected to serve the country: To congressional Democrats, one thing: Don’t bully, listen. To congressional Republicans, one thing: Don’t whine, find common ground.

Instead of seeking re-election in 2010, Ohio Senator George Voinovich (R) will retire. In my view, we Ohioans will lose a good senator; one who is more moderate than many of his Republican colleagues and one will has gone against the party (and even the president) on more than one occasion. Unfortunately, the odds are will give us a more-partisan replacement.

On the topic of Congress, the Library of Congress’s legislative page (Thomas) is awesome!

For those who don’t like lawyers, hope you read this George Will column about litigation.

People like Bernie Madoff aren’t worth much space on this page. One question though: How and the heck did the SEC ignore the flaming arrows pointing at the guy?

Has anyone noticed the number of “Bs” in the news? Bernie (Madoff), Barack, Biden, Bailouts, Banks, Bush, Blagojevich, Burris, BCS, Bin Laden, Bill (Clinton), Bernanke … but no Boris Badenov. Sure would be great if someone could pull a rabbit out of their hat …. Presto!

On Sports
I enjoy seeing a great player have a career with one team.

The greatest championship run ever?  Try topping Kenyon College winning the D-III swimming and diving championship every year since 1980. That’s 29 straight and counting!

It Takes All Kinds


From Things to Ponder gadget
If quitters never win, and winners never quit, than who is the fool who said, “Quit while you’re ahead”?